Sioux Falls, S.D. – The Northern State University men’s basketball team advanced Monday in the NSIC/Sanford Health Basketball Tournament, following a game winning shot by Mason Stark with under one second remaining. The Wolves defeated the Warriors 77-76, improving to 25-6 overall this season.
Winona State led by three with 21 seconds left in regulation. Ian Smith drove the lane and brought NSU within one knocking down his 11th and 12th points of the game. The Wolves fouled the Warriors, who were unable to drain their first free throw attempt, and Parker Fox came down with the defense rebound. Northern moved the ball up the floor and Ian Smith dished it to Mason Stark, who drove the lane for the game winner.
Northern trailed Winona State 42-34 at the half, and the Wolves battled back with 43 points in the second. NSU shot 51.9 percent from the floor, 27.8 percent from the 3-point line, and 94.7 percent from the foul line in the win. They tallied five made 3-pointers, 11 assists, three blocks, and three steals. They out-rebounded the Warriors 28-25 in the win. Northern notched 38 points in the paint, 12 points off the bench, 11 points off turnovers, eight fast break points, and five points off four offensive rebounds.
Gabe King and Andrew Kallman led the team scoring 19 points apiece. King knocked down 7-of-11 from the floor and 3-of-3 from the free throw line with five rebounds and two blocks. Kallman shot 41.7 percent from the floor and went a perfect 7-of-7 from the foul line. The sophomore added two rebounds and one assist.
Ian Smith and Justin Decker were the final two Wolves in double figures with 12 and ten points respectively. Smith led the team, notching a double-double with ten points, as well as four assists and one steal. He shot 85.7 percent from the floor as well. Decker tallied three rebounds, two assists, and one steal.
Cole Dahl added five points, in his first start of the 2018-19 season. He added three rebounds and one assist. Mason Stark led the team off the bench with six points, shooting 50.0 percent from the floor. He added two rebounds, one assist, one block, and one steal. Parker Fox and Jordan Belka grabbed the final six points for NSU in the game.
The Wolves will appear in the NSIC/Sanford Health Basketball Tournament championship game for the second straight year. Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m. from the Sanford Pentagon, between Northern State and Southwest Minnesota State.